Often touted as the adventure capital of New Zealand, Queenstown is packed with exciting adventures to be had. There's a quieter, more relaxed side to this little city too, with a heavily lauded wine region right on its doorstep, and the neighbouring Arrowtown village making for a delightful day out. Arrowtown is particularly beautiful as the golden autumn colours sweep through the valley.
Queenstown is perched on the edge of the clear, blue waters of the glacial Lake Wakatipu, and cloaked by the towering Remarkables mountain range. A trip on the historic Earnslaw steamship, or Skyline Gondola are ideal for showcasing the dramatic scenery.
This stunning, rugged location is equally as beautiful in winter as it is in the summer, with each season giving way to a new variety of things to see and do. The annual Queenstown Winter Fest is particularly popular and sure to be a good time, with heaps of activities to celebrate the beginning of winter featured in the lineup. The skiing here is top notch too, with four family friendly ski fields in close proximity.
There's a strong international influence in the humming town, it's a top destination for overseas travellers, and the dynamic mix of cultures makes it an interesting and exciting place to be.
Queenstown has a strong hospitality scene with plenty of excellent bars and eateries to keep you fuelled for all of your adventures. Not to mention it's the home of the iconic Fergburger, proclaimed by some as one of the best burgers in the world.
Best time to go
Queenstown is great at any time of the year. During the winter ski season you'll enjoy crisp, clear days on the snow and snug hospitality après ski. Warm, dry sunny weather during the southern summer makes for fantastic sightseeing, winery visiting and hiking in the nearby national parks.
How much will it cost
The strength of the Kiwi dollar means New Zealand has overall costs comparable to most developed countries. Hotels and hostels can be a bit pricier here than in other parts of the country due to Queenstown's evergreen popularity. Make sure you budget for ski or snowboard hire, bungee jumping, jet boat rides, and all the other attractions you'll want to experience.
With no snakes or otherwise dangerous animals, your biggest risk might be sunburn caused by the strong summer UV. New Zealand has an excellent healthcare system and all visitors are covered for medical treatment resulting from accidents. Any costs from illness will need to covered by your travel insurance.
Citizens from over 50 countries, including Australia, the UK, USA and most European countries, do not need to apply for a visitor's visa, and can stay in New Zealand for up to three months. A range of business, work, study and other visas are also available.